A political action committee created in support of Jeb Bush’s 2016 campaign for President is being handed one of the biggest fines in FEC history for taking money from a Chinese billionaire.
Right to Rise USA took the donation, which is said to have been $1.3 million, from two Chinese nationals- Gordon Tang and Huaidan Chen, executives at a company called American Pacific International Capital. Neil Bush, a brother of Jeb and President George W. Bush, is a board member of the company, asked the executives for the donation, according to reporting from Mother Jones.
The Campaign Legal Center filed a complaint with the Federal Elections Committee in regards to the large donation after reporting from The Intercept highlighted the potential violations of election laws that occurred through the donation.
After litigation proceedings, the Jeb Bush PAC has agreed to pay $390,000 in fines, and APIC will pay $550,000. The total sum represents the largest fine ever issued by the FEC for foreign election interference.
Right to Rise spent more money than any Super PAC in American election history in support of Jeb Bush’s disastrous presidential campaign. It was led by GOPe political operative Mike Murphy, who spends his days in 2019 on Twitter lamenting what he perceives as a Russian conspiracy puppeteering Donald Trump’s election and presidency, in addition to the decline of traditional liberal politicians such as the Bushes in American politics.
Murphy seems much less boisterous in denouncing the Chinese election interference he abetted as chief strategist of Right to Rise, despite evidence for it being clear and substantial, unlike the Russian conspiracy liberals on the right and left have become addicted to.
In an ideal world, we’d be beyond even speaking about the Bushes and their political network, having politely recognized them as an element of American political history that is relegated to the past.
However, the hypocrisy of associated operatives like Murphy in denouncing fictitious Russian plots while chairing a PAC that accepted millions from Chinese companies means this legacy political dynasty can’t simply fade into history.
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Democrat Superdelegates Willing to Overturn Primary Delegate Count to Stop Bernie
The Democratic Party still has a ‘superdelegate’ system.
New York Times interviews with several Democrat superdelegates revealed that the party elites are willing and prepared to block a Bernie Sanders nomination if they have the ability.
The superdelegates only enter into play if the Democrat nomination process goes to a second ballot at the party’s convention in Milwaukee. For that to happen, no candidate could possess an outright majority of (pledged) delegates on the first ballot.
In such a case, superdelegates could plausibly prove instrumental in deciding the nomination.
Bernie Sanders has gone on the record stating that the Democrat candidate who possesses the most delegates at the convention-even if they’re not an outright majority- should be the nominee. Every other Democrat candidate, with the exception of Tulsi Gabbard, has declined to back such a proposition.
Superdelegates interviewed by the Times seemed relatively unapologetic about the prospect of overturning the will of a plurality of Democrat voters and handing the nomination to a candidate with less popular votes and delegates.
“Bernie wants to redefine the rules and just say he just needs a plurality,” said Jay Jacobs, chair of the New York Democrat Party. “I don’t think we buy that. I don’t think the mainstream of the Democratic Party buys that. If he doesn’t have a majority, it stands to reason that he may not become the nominee.”
The Times interviewed 93 superdelegates, finding consensus behind such a controversial proposition.
Superdelegates lost their right to participate in the first nominating ballot for the presidential primary after the 2016 election. Many Democrats were incensed at their undemocratic role in the nominating process, especially in light of their overwhelming allegiance to Hillary Clinton in the 2016 primary.
Superdelegates are composed of party donors, elected officials, and other elite Democrats granted the powerful position by the DNC.
It’s worth noting that primary season talk of contested conventions, be it in the Republican or Democrat Party, rarely materializes. Hope of a contested convention is usually limited to a pipe dream that party segments resort to when it becomes too obvious that their preferred candidate is not going to be selected by voters.
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